Arts & Culture City Features In Focus

HPX: Basia Bulat

(Basia Bulat. Photo by: George Fok)
(Basia Bulat. Photo: George Fok)

Folk has found its way into the Halifax Pop Explosion festival as Ontario-raised singer/song-writer Basia Bulat prepares for her upcoming show on Saturday.
After releasing her fourth studio album in February, Good Advice, Bulat has spent most of her year on the road performing hits like ‘La La Lie’ and ‘Fool’.

While her first three albums were recorded in Montreal, Bulat travelled to Kentucky where Good Advice was produced by My Morning Jacket leader Jim James.
“Writing songs, half of it is me and half of it is something else I can’t quite explain. I feel very lucky that I got to make [Good Advice] and that I caught those songs in the air at the right place at the right time.”
Recognized for playing the autoharp, Bulat performed at the Halifax Jazz Festival in July. She said about being an opening act for three-time Juno award-winning City and Colour: “they were really, really nice to us – very generous with their time and energy.”
After Good Advice peaked at #23 on the Billboard Canadian Albums Chart, the album was nominated for the 2016 Polaris Music Prize. Her 2013 album Tall Tall Shadow was nominated for the same award in 2014, as well as the Juno Award for Adult Alternative Album of the Year.
For her next Halifax show this Saturday, Bulat and her band plan to pack the Marquee Ballroom for a unique concert experience.
“Lately the shows keep really stretching out, it’s uncharted territory I guess.”
“[The songs] all kind of change when time goes on,” Bulat explains. “Every night they slowly start morphing into something new so they’re always surprising me.”
On tour for most of 2016 with little time off, Bulat is still “working on stuff all the time, hoping I can put music out as soon as possible.”
Bulat’s music has given her the chance to perform at some iconic venues in the past. At a benefit for Tibet House in February, she was able to perform two songs at Carnegie Hall, even meeting soul and funk singer Sharon Jones.
“There’s lots of places I never even in my head would’ve thought I’d get to play one day or dream about because I wouldn’t even have it as a possibility. So I’m just leaving myself open to, ‘okay, something crazy will probably happen’.”
Halifax Pop Explosion runs through October 22. Bulat will perform on Saturday at 10:30 pm at the Marquee Ballroom on Gottingen street following opening performances by Hannah Georgas and Schmieds Puls.

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